Friday High Five: Summer Meal Planning

Figuring out what to eat is a challenge not unique to those with special diets. Between busy schedules, conflicting health information, affordability and access to food, and personal food or body image issues, food is always on our to-do list. And decision fatigue is a real thing.

Many of us are also in the summer season, when we seek to feel more spontaneous and carefree, two adjectives that are rarely associated with having food allergies. 

Having a child with food allergies has taught me the art of meal-planning - out of necessity. I do it in a specific way to meet the diverse needs of my family members, but the blueprint could work for any family. My favorite tool for meal-planning is Plan to Eat, an online meal planner. It allows you to create your own cookbook, with various options for adding recipes. Recipes can be customized and tagged to meet your family’s needs. It’s possible to plan day by day or week by week, or save specific meal plans to repeat later. It also generates grocery lists specific to your meal plan, with the option to add things from a customizable “staples list.” You can also share recipes with other members, allowing space for new recipes to add to your rotation, and any recipe can be easily imported from the web. Plan to Eat also has amazing customer service and user support. We have been subscribers for years and it is a huge sanity saver and key part of our routine.

As we prepare for our first summer weekend around these parts, here are three of our favorite simple, shareable, on-the-go recipes for concerts, the pool and the beach: an aptly named appetizer, a yummy main dish (throw in some chicken or tofu for extra protein), and a dessert like these, which are so much better homemade. As always, double check recipes and labels to ensure they work for your specific circumstances.

One of the most popular services I offer my clients is a meal-planning resource customized to their specific allergens. I offer a blueprint for weekly dinners, along with multiple recipe options that fit into the overall plan. In addition, I offer a safe foods list for other meals and snacks to take the guess work out of meals - eliminating not just, “what should we eat?”...but also, “is this safe for me/my child?”

Reach out to learn more! It has taken me years to get to the point where I feel like meal-planning has been simplified - let me save you the time and capture some of that summer spontaneity and ease.